It was for this reason, as I understand it, that the Acting Quartermaster-General protested against your order, and asked that it be countermanded.
Staff officers belonging exclusively to your army corps are directly under your command and subject to your orders, but those who are assigned to duty at general depots must be left under the orders of the heads of their own staff corps or departments. Any recommendations you may make in regard to officers assigned to duty at depots of general supply will receive due attention.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. W. HALLECK,
TAZEWELL, Tennessee, December 7, 1863-7 a.m.
(Received 3.50 p.m.)
Major General H. W. HALLECK,
Longstreet is in full retreat up the valley. Your orders about following with cavalry shall be carried out. My division of cavalry attacked the enemy's cavalry in one of the passes of the Clinch Mountain yesterday afternoon and are now pushing them vigorously. I have not yet heard of the approach of our cavalry from Knoxville. I have sent General Willcox with his infantry and artillery toward the mountains to attack the enemy's flank at Bean's Station. Couriers from Knoxville arrived last night. The road is clear. Sherman arrived there yesterday.
J. G. FOSTER,
(Same to General Grant.)
TAZEWELL, December 7, 1863-9 p.m.
I have returned from the Clinch River where I expected to join a brigade of infantry and drive the enemy from the summit of Clinch Mountain, so as to play on the flanks of the retreating enemy with artillery; but the troops were so weakened by the one-quarter rations that they have had for some months that they did not get to the position in time. The cavalry have skirmished with the enemy all day. Upon my return here I find a dispatch from General Burnside desiring me to join him with my whole force. This I shall do, as my force is too small to do much by itself. General Burnside thinks Longstreet is not defeated, but is merely falling back to avoid Sherman.
J. G. FOSTER,
(Same to General Halleck.)
HEADQUARTERS NINTH ARMY CORPS,
Knoxville, Tennessee, December 7, 1863.
Brigadier General E. FERRERO.
Commanding First Division, Ninth Army Corps:
GENERAL: You will have your command ready to move at 7 o'clock this morning, with 60 rounds of ammunition per man and all the rations they can procure. No knapsacks or baggage of